Time to double down on the Asia rebalance
President Barack Obama’s Asia trip, which has started with a visit to Japan, will send an unmistakable signal: the United States remains committed to a region that has become the world’s economic and military center of gravity.
Yet once the afterglow of the visit fades, U.S. allies and partners in the Asia-Pacific are bound once again to question American staying power. True, the Obama administration’s signature foreign policy initiative – the pivot or rebalance to Asia – has achieved many of its initial objectives. Countries in the region recognize this. But they are ultimately more focused on what will come next. And with less than three years of Obama’s presidency remaining, now is the moment to lay out a vision for U.S. Asia policy through 2016.
Daniel Kliman is a Senior Advisor with the Asia Program at the German Marshall Fund of the United States.